Workload is "unacceptable", say 6 out of 10 primary teachers

15th June 2017 at 15:16
Planning and assessment burden is too much for 58 per cent of primary teachers, a new poll suggests

Nearly six out of ten primary teachers say that the amount of planning and assessment expected of them is unacceptable.

And 42 per cent of primary teachers say they have suffered from work-related stress during the past six months, according to a survey of 750 people.

The poll found that 38 per cent of primary teachers have seen their workload increase in the past year, with just 20 per cent saying it had fallen.

A Department for Education survey published earlier this year found that classroom teachers were working an average 54-hour week, with senior leaders working even longer: 60 hours per week on average.

The DfE’s Workload Challenge, launched in 2014, found that planning, data management and marking were three key areas for action and three working groups were set up to look at ways of reducing workload in these areas.

The recommendations – published in March 2016 – included senior leaders reviewing the demands made on teachers in relation to planning and schools not collecting summative assessment data on pupils more than three times a year.

“Working as a primary school teacher can be a demanding and stressful job, with many of the people we spoke to singling out the workload arising from planning and assessment as particularly testing,” said Victoria Short, managing director of Randstad Public Services, which ran the poll.

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